This week, Price Harry visited a Suffolk branch of the brain injury charity, Headway to help launch their new initiative, the Brain Injury Identity Card.
The ID cards are to be given to brain injury survivors over the age of 18 with the aim of enabling them to access the appropriate support when coming into contact with the criminal justice system.
It is hoped that the cards will also be a useful resource for survivors explaining their condition and symptoms to those they come into contact with.
During a presentation to Prince Harry, Peter McCabe, chief executive of Headway UK, said,
“For many there isn’t a visible scar, it is beneath the hair line, so survivors can be misunderstood and their injury unseen.
This can create all sorts of social barriers and lead to survivors coming into the criminal justice system. The brain injury card is designed to help police officers more easily identify survivors and make sure they receive proper support.”
Carlos Lopez, a medical negligence solicitor at Farleys Solicitors and trustee of Headway Preston & Chorley, is one of many to have praised the initiative. He said,
“I think the ID cards are fantastic! I have met many people through Farleys and Headway who have suffered brain injuries and are living with the effects including difficulty walking, slurred speech and memory problems.
These symptoms can often be confused with the effects of being drunk leading to exclusion from public places and even unnecessary arrests. The new ID cards will offer an explanation for the behaviour of brain injury survivors and bring the support and understanding they need from members of the public and the police service.”
The Headway initiative is UK wide and has been done in partnership with a number of organisations including National Police Chiefs Council, the College of Policing, Police Scotland and The Police Service of Northern Ireland. Brain injury survivors can apply for a Brain Injury Identity Card through the Headway website here.